As a dancer, Luis Miguel Carrera Salva of Bensalem, PA, knows firsthand how massage therapy makes him feel better when he is sore or injured. Because of his experience, he wanted to learn how to become a massage therapist so he could help others through their pain.
After searching on the internet, he learned about Montgomery County Community College’s new Massage Therapy Program and enrolled in the program. Six months later, he is one of the first nine graduates to complete the program and receive his certificate at the graduation ceremony held on Dec. 20 in the College’s new Health Sciences Center in Blue Bell.
The other graduates include Dominique Arthurs of Blue Bell, PA; Claudia Gutierrez of Ambler, PA; Sharon Jenkins of Oreland, PA; Amanda Landis of Green Lane, PA: Velesia Lewis of Horsham, PA; Adriel Magidenko of Richboro, PA; Gabriella Neri of Philadelphia, PA; and Sarah Stanton of Norristown, PA.
MCCC’s 600-hour Massage Therapy Program is designed to prepare students to pass the State Board of Massage Therapy’s approved licensure examination. The program teaches business fundamentals, anatomy and physiology, kinesiology, history of massage, body mechanics, massage techniques and rehabilitative aspects of massage. Additionally, students are required to practice 50 hours of practical massage time outside of class.
“In addition to receiving your certificate for completing the program, you will also receive nine credits for the program should you continue your education at the College,” said Dr. David DiMattio, Vice President of Workforce Development and Continuing Education at MCCC. “This speaks volumes as to the rigor of the program you just completed. We hope you consider the College in your future.”
The graduates are planning to take the licensure exams in January 2018. Three of the graduates have already secured employment upon passing the exams. Gabriella Neri plans to work at Massage Envy in Ardmore, Sarah Stanton plans to work at Massage Envy in Plymouth Meeting, and Amanda Landis plans to work at The Body Serene Day Spa in Skippack.
“The program was awesome,” said Landis, who was not sure what she wanted to do after high school and decided to explore the programs offered in health care. “It was short, but it provided all the information I need to start working right away in the field.”
Program Manager William Mullen, LMT, presented the honors awards and praised the students for their diligence, including spending eight weeks researching and developing business plans.
The myology award went to Luis Miguel Carrera Salva; anatomy and physiology award, Amanda Landis; massage therapy award, Gabriella Neri; business plan awards, Luis Miguel Carrera Salva, Amanda Landis and Sarah Stanton; and clinical performance award, Sarah Stanton.
Graduate Adriel Magidenko says the business plan course will help him when he starts his own business after he passes the licensure exam.
“I’ve always been into fitness and bodybuilding, and I have a passion for helping other people who are in pain for sports or other injuries,” he said.
The next full-time Massage Therapy Program starts on March 19, 2018 and runs through Sept. 6, 2018. The College also offers a part-time program beginning Jan. 16, 2018 through Dec. 21, 2018. For more information, visit mc3.edu/massage.
According to the U.S. Department of Labor Bureau of Statistics, employment in this field is expected to grow 22 percent from 2014 through 2024, with growth higher than average for all occupations. Massage therapists work in a variety of settings, including spas, franchised clinics, physicians’ offices, hotels and fitness centers.